I plan to write a whole bunch of new e-mails before I depart


by Ghahremani

Writers often talk about the urge to write their sudden inspirations on whatever comes handy, and frankly, I don’t really care to know how many bestsellers were conceived on a roll of toilet paper. I never experienced such urge, at least not until 4:00 a.m. this morning. Amid allergies that made breathing impossible and reminded me of imminent mortality, a sudden discovery flashed in my mind.

Millions of visions of what may come once we die appeared before me, none of which had to do with sorrow, fear, or even regret. In fact, it was a most optimistic moment, so uplifting that by 4:11 I was out of bed and at my computer. Of course, I first read the latest on New York Times, but even the horrifying news pouring out of Sudan, Iraq, and the bedrooms of celebrities failed to spoil my gusto. I had just become aware of my own immortality, and believe me, that to a writer – published or not – is no small news.

Too wrapped up in manuscripts, forwards, and e-mails, I had not realized that my generation is making history. As the first of cyber people, we have found the infamous fountain of youth within a box called computer and as a result, have found a road to infinity. Just think about it, long after our bodies are putrefied and each of us has turned to dust, we continue life on the Internet and shall forever own a part of cyber space that no one could confiscate.

No doubt soon there’ll be smart entrepreneurs to try and milk that fact for all its worth, and surely there will be dorks who may add a whole appendix to their will, include a password, and leave everything to their dog. There may even be cyber crematories that for a small fee destroy your remains. However, that’s a personal choice. To die or not to die, that is now the question!

I, for one, am not only going to leave things as they are, I plan to write a whole bunch of new e-mails before I depart. First, I’ll ask all my friends to keep the notes, the forwards, and especially the first-hand jokes coming. I bet where I go downloading is going to be much easier. Then comes the fun part where I respond to all the spam I’ve been bombarded with over the decades: Yes, Virgilio, here’s my bank account and nothing makes me happier than to help you with your recent inheritance, and yes, Pamela, I love to party and meet young singles in my neighborhood and, Roberto Gonzales Ramirez, you can send me all the cheap Viagra you want, but I’ll pass on the enlargement of anatomical parts I was born without.

Old as one may feel, life is still sweet and there’s something magical in being reassured of your longevity. This morning’s breakfast is going to taste better than any meal I’ve ever had. No more calorie counting, never mind the carbs or the cholesterol. I shall savor every morsel of the forbidden foods, because thanks to Google Search, I am invincible.


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by Zohreh (not verified) on

Dear Azarin:

Whenever I hear sadness in the voice of someone young, I am reminded of a sad girl I used to know decades ago. We are a sorrow-loving nation and value misery more than its worth. Look at our poetry, our literature, our art, movies, plays. There is little room in Iranian heart for happiness. We like to blame our misfortunes thoughout history, but look at a nation like Mexicans. They, too, have had their fair share of mistreatments. These people lost not only their Mayan history, but majority of them live in poverty and have little to be happy about. Yet they remain cheerful and enjoy life with whatever it has to offer. Iranians consider humor "shallow" and all deep intellectuals do their best to at least look miserable. To us, idiots laugh and the worthy sigh!

Dear Azarin, when your tears are all wasted, you have no choice but to laugh. I have reached a stage in my life that is beyond sorrow. I have no doubt that someday you, too, will be able to look back and laugh.

To end my comment, allow me to paraphrase an old Chinese saying. "Life is a tragedy to those who feel, and a comedy to those who think!"

Azarin Sadegh

Great piece.

by Azarin Sadegh on

I loved your essay. I especially loved its positive tone, filled with humor, passion and life.

I like to write too. But, mostly, I write sad and depressing stuff. So even if this eternity exists, in my own will, I will ask to be destroyed, for good!

Because I always wonder what is the use of catching these miserable moments to spread it to the end of times? What could be behind this desire of capturing ugly images of my “present” for unborn generations? What kind of use might the eternity have for my useless unhappiness? Who needs to see this sorrow?

I am also a software engineer and well aware of this limited eternity that Google is offering to us. So I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole humanity -- if they write emails, if they add comments to online articles, if they create their own blog, if they choose not to die – would finally become immortal through powerful servers and a wonderful distributed storage system.

Again, I loved your optimism and I am so envious of your immortality.